The Underground Librarian

What cats do before meeting curiosity sellers….

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    • Cooking, menu as requested January 21, 2017
      I soaked 1/2 cup of dried Pinto beans two days ago. They were rinsed and slow cooked for five hours the next day. The beans are dressed with one chopped small onion, two minced garlic cloves, and 1/2 teaspoon of iodized salt. Mashed gently and cook off most of the liquid. Important: Do not burn. […]
      Tespid
    • Cooking, As requested January 20, 2017
      My measurements follow for left over ingredients. Increase proportions as needed for an anticipated meal. Boil two chopped medium potatoes in water till soft and easily breaks apart. Mash and season with two tablespoons of chicken broth. Set aside. While the potatoes are boiling steam enough cabbage for two servings. Add in thin strips of […]
      Tespid
    • Cigarette #4 January 17, 2017
      Damn that little white girl! Damn her to hell! Her clear skin with soft taupe cheeks; I cannot stand the bitch; delicate and tapered alabaster white fingers; every portion of skin unblemished and taut. The notion of early eighteenth century manly desire still lingers in the pickup joints, sex shops, and public libraries. Even outside […]
      Tespid
    • Cigarettes #3 January 17, 2017
      “Put yure shit dawn and shut up! Dis de only time I’m tellin’ you and if you miss ‘ear me youl miss it foreva. I’ll wait. I’ll wait. I’ll be kwaet firs, then use. I’m to cited to tell, but ya must mind. Ya, it sumtin ya need no. Fur da fers time maybe, but […]
      Tespid
    • Tidbit 2.0 The detailed quickie January 17, 2017
      Where is the VA Clinic? VA North Texas Health Care System http://www.northtexas.va.gov/ Cached Similar Oct 31, 2016 – Home page for VA North Texas Health Care System, providing information about patient care and services provided for eligible Veterans and … Texas VA Hospitals – VFW Texas – My VFW myvfw.org/texas/texas–va–hospitals/ Cached Similar Veterans He […]
      Tespid
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Cooking, menu as requested

Posted by Tespid on January 20, 2017

I soaked 1/2 cup of dried Pinto beans two days ago. They were rinsed and slow cooked for five hours the next day. The beans are dressed with one chopped small onion, two minced garlic cloves, and 1/2 teaspoon of iodized salt. Mashed gently and cook off most of the liquid. Important: Do not burn. So keep a close eye every hour while they cook. Add more water early in the cook time as necessary.

Today I boiled rice and fried a tilapia fillet dressed in Panko bread crumbs. I used corn oil for the fry. During plating take 1/2 cup of rice and season with 1 tablespoon butter and lightly dress with salt and pepper. Cover the rice with 1/3 cup of beans. Set the fish fillet to the side of the large bowl. Further dress the beans with finely chopped onion and black olives. In a small niche between beans and rice place 1/8 cup of the coating for eggplant bruschetta.

Serve. Season. Eat.

Note: I do not add seasoning to the fish before frying. Season to taste at the table. For some the taste may balance out with the slat content in the rice, beans, olives, or eggplant.

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Cooking, As requested

Posted by Tespid on January 19, 2017

My measurements follow for left over ingredients. Increase proportions as needed for an anticipated meal.

Boil two chopped medium potatoes in water till soft and easily breaks apart. Mash and season with two tablespoons of chicken broth. Set aside.

While the potatoes are boiling steam enough cabbage for two servings. Add in thin strips of carrot made with a vegetable peeler. Also add in half an apple slice into thin sections. If necessary season with 1/4 teaspoon of no salt seasoning. Mrs Dash or a generic brand works well.

Lastly prepare the turkey meatballs:

1/2 cup of ground Turkey

1/4 cup of breadcrumbs (Mine where made from leftover buttermilk biscuits)

1 tablespoon of dried onion soup mix

2 tablespoons of cream cheese

1/4 cup of corn oil for frying in a medium fry pan

Slowly heat the oil in the fry pan. In a bowl combine the turkey, breadcrumbs, soup mix, and cream cheese. I do not remember using an egg. The ground turkey was reasonably still bloody and extremely moist. If you do add an egg, make for proportions of 1 cup of turkey or half the egg to meat the measurements. Mix well. Place by rounded tablespoon into the oil. Fry till browned on most sides and cooked through. Yield will come to less than 10. Set meatballs aside and cover. Pour off enough oil out of the pan to leave an 1/8 of a cup in the bottom. Add one cup of chicken broth and heat well. Meanwhile take one and a half tablespoons of flour and 1/4 cup of water in a small cup. Beat well, at least until there are no lumps. Add to the broth and allow to thicken. Season to taste with less than a 1/4 teaspoon each of garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.

Serve with a small portion of bread if desired. I plated everything with a tablespoon or two of hummus and half a piece of warmed pita.

This warmed my bones as well as my stomach. I ate barely a serving of each dish and was happy to conclude the night with homemade dark chocolate chip cookies four hours later. Something to be said for patience and encouragement.

With yesterday’s leftovers, tonight I am sated.

W.H.Tespid ERT

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Cigarette #4

Posted by Tespid on January 17, 2017

Damn that little white girl! Damn her to hell! Her clear skin with soft taupe cheeks; I cannot stand the bitch; delicate and tapered alabaster white fingers; every portion of skin unblemished and taut. The notion of early eighteenth century manly desire still lingers in the pickup joints, sex shops, and public libraries. Even outside of those haunts, the demands on womanhood to be attractive are all insane and unreal. It is a class thing. It must be; that and a sheer evidence of prejudice. I am educated enough to receive entry into the King’s Ball broadcast at a sub annex of the palace. I don’t need the ball gown with hoop skirt attached. Jeans and t-shirt with valid id are enough to get me in the door. But, for me. You know me? Not the pencil and paper pusher but it is the persona of the hand laborer during the day that bars me from their reality or desires for romance. Know that I am no pristine specimen. It is not tattoos that yoke the back of my neck or piercings that intimate that I have far more experience than my age belies. It is the peeling skin from needle cuts on the pads of my fingers. It is the strawberries embedded in skin that turn brown before the fullness of the moon. (I wonder if liver spots now belie the experience of my age.) It is the keloi patterns scattered across my knees and feet that reveal my aggressions and happenstance before I can speak. All these make me damaged goods. What man would want a working portend to an ivory tower? I am called confused for intelligence should elevate my stature above a working class whore for simpler living.

 I have held these tears for years walking through mental doors and being barred from others. After recoiling for a short age, I’ve narrowed down my crucifixion to one thing. It is the thing that kills my mind everyday to the point that I dream of deranging it. I can no more draw in permanent black Sumi ink over it, nor can cut it out with toe nail clippers without suffering a grand demise of blood. It is my mark and I am coming to a head with it. It is one reason I am forced in to the lower castes of American romantic society. Yes, I do think well and high of myself. This outing is another false muse and I wonder the help it gives me to make it through the day. Still, princesses do not have marks like this. Rather they do not court burns in the slightest fashion.

First I blamed, then, I chose to forget. Thinking back, I have had horrible events with babysitters. To get to this one you walk to the top of the street, and then you take a right and walk about six or eight houses down. Babysitter, Mrs. Such ‘n’ such, lived in the house to the right. I was welcomed in her home as a second daughter several times a month. Her daughter and I played in the pool and shared a bed over long weekends. One afternoon Mrs. Such ‘n’ such helped me into my clothes after a shower. Time in the pool had consumed the afternoon. That afternoon there was both of us standing in the middle of the room. My babysitter passed the dress over my head while balancing a lit cigarette between hands to avoid burning me. As she bent down to help me lift my feet through the dress opening, I suddenly smelled burning meat. Next I felt sharp prickling on my calf. I jumped back and shouted at the same time. She apologized, but I was confused, feeling assaulted. I dressed, got my things and walked back to my grandfather’s house down the street and around the corner. Buy the time I got there the burn was numb. I thought nothing of it for years. Now there is something else to remember.

Deacon’s wife gave me a ride home after Mass. Another Deacon’s wife sat with me in the back of the van.

“Father told me to ask you something.”

“Oh! Go ahead, I’m listening.”

“Do you make pottery?”

“I have in the past. I am trying to build a kiln in the back yard.”

“Oh, alright. He wanted to know if you knew about burning clay pots so they can no longer be used again. It has something to do with Jesus.”

At that point I was dumbfounded. I shut my mouth and listened. Later I mused fighting understanding, about Aboriginal creation stories that tell of God creating mankind out of clay and breathing life into the vessel to give life to man. I learned that the greater portion of us is made of water, but the rest is mostly the same minerals and dirt we walk on with our feet. All this is accounted for except the existence of the soul and spirit. Surviving by the breath of wind we go, indeed.

From there, that night, I could not but jump into metaphysical conversation. I came to think that with this burn on my body, and having bided by the only death in Christ, my vessel cannot be used again. Not that in my ignorance I am endorsing being a zombie or living of the dead. I am still not able to wrap my brain around eternity with or without a body. Old wine in new vessels seems an appropriate way to look at longevity.

Closure dictates it is time to construct a hymn of my temple- to forgive and to relive by each mark. Dare me so, I could probably tell a tale about each scar as well as each limb and part of my body. That is a lazy tale for a book to tell that sits on the shelf between the Kama Sutra and yoga for the mind.

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Cigarettes #3

Posted by Tespid on January 16, 2017

“Put yure shit dawn and shut up! Dis de only time I’m tellin’ you and if you miss ‘ear me youl miss it foreva. I’ll wait. I’ll wait. I’ll be kwaet firs, then use. I’m to cited to tell, but ya must mind. Ya, it sumtin ya need no. Fur da fers time maybe, but neber the last. Ya here? Pay tenshun. I seen it. I saw it walk on Gots gren ert. Nose ya dat Godt ert is fum ere tad ere an ever. Ise seen ‘em alright. Da monsher e is. I took is tower and is nose. For me a buried ‘em deep. Use. Use all. Eber one use got to free use from ‘em. I’d mi fight. Use ya own.”

I may be a super hero now, but in all honesty I was only a drop of consideration in a bucket that melted by the autumn bonfire before here. Though all that matter is here, I am compelled to tell you of then. I do not mean to make the landscape so intimate, but know me for this: You’ll never understand the impact on earth when falling from heaven. My back is broke still. My spine healed in pieces. My arms gave birth to the activity of two pair and now my reach is as lengthy as it is weighty.

As a tween I bore hunger in my hips and cheeks. Walking home so far, so many times caused a tendency in my neck to look down. I became more fascinated with the cracks between planks of cement than clouds in the sky or oncoming traffic. It was a risk that I preferred to take even during rainstorms and pelting hail. For me I had lost interest in the common world. Depression took its toll physically. As a result, I took my position on earth lower than a dog. While walking, what caught in the loops of my mind was not just leaves and branches, but also the detritus of human life: bottle caps, McDonald’s napkins, empty cans of Coke, bubble gum, and cigarettes. With home training nothing would grace my lips from this used bounty. Still, in my hunger as a growing child, I became aware of oral attractions over each piece of garbage. Despite that, I never gave in to bending over, scouring the ground, and chewing old smoked tobacco drowned in automobile exhaust and acid rain. My God, the draw was unbearable.

The places I could turn my head without seeing ashtrays, human or otherwise, must have resulted in attracting a strong demon. Not long after acknowledging my unGodly appetites, I had unbearable visions of cigarettes being forced down my throat. Night after night upon going to my bedroom I could fight, but the force became stronger. Finally I gave in, but on being clever, I let the imagery pass through and out of me as my only counter. This way I did not bear through the visualizations of physical burn and acrid taste. The energy behind the encounter seemed satisfied with this victory. My counter to his spite was that my senses were edified in never wanting to smoke.

Eyes open. I saw him walk to the right. The landscape was more like an Atari video game than the backyard of the house. The yellow earth supported the cigarette monster well. Meanwhile, I remained still until I could find a place to gain higher ground. In a video game from the 1980’s that would be difficult. Cigarette Monster saw me watching him and the chase began. He was seven feet tall and verdant green with spikes running down his back. Fore and aft he began throwing cigarettes everywhere as he scurried after me. Panicking, I ran left to right. Straight runners have trouble chasing after side winding prey. Back and forth, back and forth across the landscape I ran trying to keep a distance. If he caught me I knew I would start smoking as a kid and it would continue for the rest of my life. Tiring him out through the run was not working. I had to think of something, anything. What would defeat a monster? I barely remembered my notes on killing a hydra, Cigarette Monster’s ancient cousin. At that moment there were no near misses, but the next run I would have to be on the kill. That would bring me closer to him than I cared to walk. Flashes. Flashes of brilliance happen and I am a firm believer in clairsentience. Without a sword or stick how would I fight? Lucid dreaming brought me blessings once and on the moment I woke and asked, there a few feet before me plugged in the ground was a hole of dead babies. Out of the corner of my eye, monster started the pursuit from the left. I ran toward the hold, jumped, then kept running. At a distance I heard him hit the edge and fall into the pit. One step less and I turned around. Apparently he fell deep into the well. Dead white babies covered in a bright green film where heaped at the top of the pit. I heard no sound. There was no movement. The demon must have dissolved on contact with early innocence. A whining sound formed in the distance. It was my alarm. I woke moments later.

Killing the monster set me free from addiction for years. I did not learn until a few years ago that it is a tradition in some metaphysical schools that you can ask for your present from the monster after its defeat. I am tempted to ask, so tempted to ask now. I wonder if the present’s power swelled in potency for over thirty years. What reality can I make for myself with that?

©N.A. Jones 2017

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Tidbit 2.0 The detailed quickie

Posted by Tespid on January 16, 2017

Where is the VA Clinic?

VA North Texas Health Care System

Oct 31, 2016 – Home page for VA North Texas Health Care System, providing information about patient care and services provided for eligible Veterans and …

Texas VA Hospitals – VFW Texas – My VFW

myvfw.org/texas/texasvahospitals/

Veterans Health Administration – VISN 17: VA Heart of Texas Health Care … 549GD, Denton CBOC, 2223 Colorado Blvd. Denton, TX 76205, (940) 202-2187.

Denton VA Outpatient Clinic – Denton, Texas – Family Medicine …

https://www.facebook.com › Places › Denton, Texas › Family Medicine Practice

Rating: 3.5 – ‎31 votes

Phone, (940) 891-6350 · Address. 2223 Colorado Blvd; Denton, Texas 76205 … Michael Herd I try to be optimistic Aunt Gail but after being in the hospital …

Texas – Locations – US Department of Veterans Affairs

https://www.va.gov/DIRECTORY/guide/state.asp?STATE=TX&dnum=ALL

Kerrville: Kerrville VA Hospital. Waco: Doris Miller … Fort Worth: Fort Worth Outpatient Clinic. Harlingen … San Antonio: Frank M. Tejeda VA Outpatient Clinic.

Fort Worth Outpatient Clinic – Locations – US Department of Veterans …

www.va.gov/directory/guide/facility.asp?id=658

Jul 9, 2015 – Parent Facility: VA North Texas Health Care System Phone: (214) 742-8387 or (800) 849-3597Fort Worth VA Outpatient Clinic is the largest …

Map of va hospital fort worth

map expand icon
 
Martin Luther King Jr. Day might affect these hours

Fort Worth VA Outpatient Clinic
2.9 (70) · Doctor
Fort Worth, TX · (817) 335-2202

VA Fort Worth Clinic: Franks Susan F PHD
1 review · Psychologist
Fort Worth, TX · (817) 735-2228

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Tidbits 1.0 – the half quickie

Posted by Tespid on January 16, 2017

courtesy of Spotted Johnny

http://www.homeslesssheltersdirectory.org

“Many of these shelters now have waiting lists. Please call before going to them. Many waiting lists are very long. Shelters and service also go out of business. Always call ahead to confirm that this location is still active. If you find that this location is no longer operating, please send us a comment using the form below.”

Excavate the page under the home tab. There are many alternatives and assistance programs available in some states. This website accumulates information for the whole United States including Alaska and Hawaii.

http://shelterlistings.org

Take a few moments to excavate the site. There is a page with brief information  for homeless veterans. I was able to locate shelters closer to my query compared to the homelesssheltersdirectory.

 

VA Housing Assistance-Texas

 AssistanceDonate to the VFWDonateMonthly GivingShop Store

Veterans Housing Help – VOA.org‎

http://www.voa.org/Veterans‎

 

We Provide Vets With Housing, Jobs and Health Care. Will You Help Us?

Veterans HousingVeterans EmploymentHelp Our VeteransDonate today

Assistance for Veterans – We Rescue Veterans in tough times‎

http://www.veteransnationalassistancefund.org/‎

 

We can only them if you help us.

All Volunteer Staff · We take NO salary · We are a genuine charity. · All Donations go to Vets.

Veterans Housing Vouchers – Homes For Those Who Served‎

http://www.buildinghomesforheroes.org/‎

 

http://www.texvet.com › Partners

 

The Rent Assistance website provides a directory of local rent assistance programs … We provide an online directory of rental assistance programs in Texas.

Housing Programs for Veterans on the Rise | Texas State Affordable …

http://www.tsahc.org/blog/post/housing-programs-for-veterans-on-the-rise

 

Nov 7, 2014 – TSAHC offers two programs to help Texas veterans become homeowners: … Affordable Communities of Texas Veterans Housing Initiative …

Housing Assistance For Veterans – Homeless Veterans

https://www.va.gov/homeless/housing.asp

 

Living here—this is a blessing,” says Emanuel Yates, one of several formerly homeless Veterans featured in this video, which discusses a VA program that is …

‎HUD-VASH Eligibility Criteria · ‎HUD-VASH · ‎Grant and Per Diem Program

Texas Residents – Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs

https://www.tdhca.state.tx.us/texans.htm

 

Ongoing rental assistance up to two years or longer including Section 8 vouchers. If you are facing eviction and need emergency, short-term rental assistance, …

VLB Home Loans – The Texas Veterans Land Board

http://www.glo.texas.gov/vlb/loans/home-loans/

In 1983, the Legislature created the VLB Veterans Housing Assistance Program (VHAP), to aid Texas Veterans in purchasing a home. Eligible Texas Veterans …

 

Texas Veterans Land Board – Texas General Land Office

http://www.glo.texas.gov/vlb/

 

Provides loans to Texas veterans for the purchase of land, and other veterans’ housing assistance programs. Details of programs, downloadable forms, meeting …

Texas State Veteran’s Benefits | Military.com

http://www.military.com/benefits/veteran-state-benefits/texas-state-veterans-benefits.html

 

The state of Texas provides several veteran benefits. … The Land Loan Program, Veterans Housing Assistance Purchase Program, and the Veterans Home …

Emergency Financial Assistance for Texas Veterans – YWCA El Paso

http://www.ywcaelpaso.org/…/Emergency_Financial_Assistance_for_Texas_Veterans.htm

 

Through “The Fund for Veterans’ Assistance” program, we provide emergency financial assistance to qualified Texas Veterans and their family members, for …

Programs Serving Primarily Veterans | Housing Crisis Center

http://www.hccdallas.org/veterans-programs/

Three programs for the chronically homeless target different populations. Most clients in these programs are veterans who were typically on active duty between …

 

Texas Veterans Blog | Benefits for Veterans Who Are Buying Homes in …

http://www.texasveteransblog.com/benefits-for-veterans-who-are-buying-homes-in-texas/

In 1983, the Texas Legislature created the Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB) Veterans Housing Assistance Program (VHAP) to assist Texas veterans in …

 

 

 

 

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Cigarettes #2

Posted by Tespid on January 15, 2017

II.

Warning: Adult content.

It’s long, white, and light sugarcane brown at the tip. He dropped the pretense of a filter years ago. The draw has never been what it looks like. Still, I am not his wife. How the hell would I know?

In high school I found out that my mother smoked cigarettes before being pregnant with me. She says she quit cold turkey. I have never seen anything like paper caning pass her lips in over forty years. My former step-father, on the other hand, smoked incessantly. I witnessed most of the lingering smoke when trying to spend family time with him. Trying to watch television with him in the family room, I sat on the other side of the room to stay away from the second hand smoke.  Despite my distance and waving hands, I was inundated by an odor mingled with sweat, dirt, and Dewar’s. Maintaining composure was difficult. I often escaped to my bedroom to read and sleep. One evening while walking out, I remember turning my head to say, “Goodnight”. My eyes caught the cigarette tip being pulled from his mouth. It was covered in tan saliva. Watching him ash into a tray covered with butts and bits of cellophane wrappers I leered closer to disgust. He slowly returned the farewell as I began to walk away again. A few feet away, I reserved my judgment and made my way to my room.

While this occasion of my stepfather comprises the core of my experience of smoking, I did not know the sensualist escape of cigarettes until after college. It came with an introduction to vintage erotica from World War II and European movies. Long stemmed filters made characters appear elegant and refined. Clove cigarettes added a mystique of the Middle East to intimate encounters. Menthol packs, I was told, alleviate throat pain. With a clever turn of phrase and the right posturing the seduction of smoke is assured. On the flip side, all that Hollywood dressing was a sign of posers who need appear to be artists to the working crowd. On film smoking seemed to be an affairs of the popular. For me, the mystique of a cigarette was another reason to leave them alone. Despite the attractive actors on the screen, the diseased films born in the mouth, the stinking breath, the burn holes in clothing, and stained ceilings where nothing I thought I needed to experience.

I didn’t say it. I couldn’t say it. I’d sound deranged. Just gimme me a moment. Please, just one quick moment to arrange myself. I’ll whisper it into the wind. If you hear it, know you can’t trace it to me, ever. I have been trained to doubt my senses. I never thought it would be an advantage in the long run, but understand this; looking into that ashtray, the disgust did not solely come from the cigarette tip, dark with saliva. It was a bitter smell I could not place. Walking away that night, it registered sexual in my head. My body recoiled closer to the wall. Knowledge of the magic, pretense, and psychosis of smoking has accumulated over the years. Mind you, not from experience. Yet, how could I forget that moment of sexual enlightenment about my step-father? I did forget though, for several months, until the dreams came and I came to hate him as well as his oral fixation.

Sleep in high school did not begin until well after midnight. Most nights I took to the kitchen table as my roost from four in the afternoon to well after cleaning dinner dishes. One night I must have closed my backpack and staggered upstairs to my bedroom. With no lights, after donning a nightgown, I set the alarm. Sleep, I imagine, came quickly. What I remember in the fog of the dream was lying half naked on white sheets comforted by white pillows. What I also remember was the stench that worked its way through the room to collect over the bed. I recognized the odor from my step-father’s roost in the family room. Sexual intent began to collect below the amber cast of smoke. What I saw next was neither human nor a living being. A large glob, the color of roasted wheat berries, profiled itself with a formed sexual member in hand at the foot of the mattress. I did not scream. Then, I had no ability to talk in my dreams. Besides that, my limbs were weighted into the mattress. This was not a lucid dream; I had no recourse or defense. I had to go through it.

In the morning the word smegma wedged itself into my vocabulary. I felt out of balance for years. I could tell no one for the sake of reputations and accusations. Even in youth, I trusted dreams and the wind changes more than I trusted adults. Though my step-father never touched me, the level of trust was irreparably damaged if not completely removed.

Two thousand miles and thirty years later, I could hear them outside the house. I may have put a lot of effort in veering away from participating in popular neighborhood business, but some cartel labeled their brand of cigarettes after me. That night I sat up, turned on the light and stared at the white walls. I don’t care or want to be the fulcrum for someone’s orgasm; especially turning me into a sexual object. After the random orgies, the pedophilic privacies, the dead bodies (human and animal), and public masturbation, eventually sex organs fall off. After the local pimp’s union tells all the women prostitutes to cut off their nipples because turning tricks has nothing to do with pleasing oneself, one wonders no more how a deviant is born. I imagine that it is the natural chemical highs that follow; first the simple, then the complex. Then come little pills that stimulate an infarction in the brain that feels like an orgasm. Yes, the almighty orgasm carries much weight. I care not to be smoked out as an addiction then or now.

It’s long, white, and light sugarcane brown at the tip. He dropped the pretense of a filter years ago. The draw has never been what it looks like. Still, I am not his wife. How the hell would I know?

 

~NCC

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Cigarettes #1

Posted by Tespid on January 14, 2017

Cigarettes

My mouth tastes like dried weeds and freezer burnt basil. Those sticks, cigarettes, I only know from the taste of men’s lips. Why every hour a former man-friend stooped in the jamb of the open front door, arm extended across the vapors that escaped his mouth, I never understood. Addictions were beyond my understanding then. I remained dumbfounded that weekend even when he let me pin him down to steal a kiss. He pushed me away and recoiled. I did not want to feel his acquiescence away from the mood that joined us at the hip a few minutes before.

“By the way, I don’t kiss my wife,” he said.

I wanted the kiss. I never had one with this much attachment to a man. I wanted what I wanted. Being married was not the question. I had never been kissed and apparently would remain that way. He returned to the front stoop and pulled from his reserve pack. Meanwhile I mused, watched, and waited for the futon mattress to get cold again.

This year I finally caught on to the prostitute’s song and dance. How they bench the weight of alcohol and cigarettes several times a day I do not want to know. Street word I heard after midnight was that the prostitutes go on alcohol runs to Oklahoma. They return with a trunk full of everything from Vodka to Jim Beam. Meanwhile, the business of cigarette sales makes this suburb a boom town.  Stores sell cartons cheap to high; vapor sales anchor the city in three places east to west; a specialty store focuses on clearing glass and paraphernalia. Now, remember all of that and then think of the regular grocer’s piece of the scene. The situation is beyond lucrative.

As for the local prostitutes, I used to think smoke and drink as props for the performance in the bedroom. Come to find out, it is self-medication. Cigarettes are possibly the least costly treatment compared to regular visits to the doctor. Lesions in mouth from venereal diseases are no doubt painful. I used to confuse myself over thinking if that was the real reason why he refused to kiss me. Fully knowing the innocence that enveloped me for years, I still wonder if the taste of cigarettes need bother me that much. I doubt in moments. They are usually the moments that escape the health conscious sensualist in me. I force myself to make an exception for the sake that I am called stuck up and high yellow. Even after all this time, I bend at those accusations. Come the occasion, I hopefully will readjust to principles before I become a mowed down weed from peer pressure. Desperation for kisses and I try to tout that the smell of cigarettes will not bother me. I can feign the argument with cigarettes in absentia, but when present they do and always will.

~NCC

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Poor #2 (Addendum)

Posted by Tespid on January 14, 2017

I watched a documentary on the Quakers almost twenty ago. What I remember about their “church” services was a quiet time of alertness. Members would intermittently stand and speak out loud what they  in the stillness. Whether their hearing was a function of the ears or mind did not matter. What I gathered from the television recording was that clarity of reception was the most important component of the service. It functioned second to any presence of God in the room.

Here I am in the after chill of rain trying to get rest before finishing lunch. In the quiet of the street outside, I heard a man’s voice quietly call my name. At the same time I remembered walking into a hotel bathroom on an overnight stop while traveling cross-country. The man went on to say that hotel living is getting old, irritating, and expensive. He cannot find a place to live. Even if he did, in a matter of three months, he would have to move out and lose his belongings. Jobs are scarce and being sociable all day long is getting equally tiring. He does not know what he is going to do. Moving on in a couple of days makes sense. Starting the whole job search and housing cycle is daunting if not solely because it has become a long-standing practice. The voice stopped. I lay quietly and tried to remember exactly what was said. I have not articulated everything to a fullness, but the emotion of irritation and loss is captured. He is hanging on with every fiber of his being.

Forgive my ignorance of dignity in poverty. Please, forgive my intellectual prejudices as well. Since I slipped below the U.S. Poverty Line statistic, my mind has never been so tender and forgiving of even the slightest nothing. Each day is a new calibration to maintain balance. What can I handle without money? What can I maximize for the least amount of cost? What services can I find gratis? Maintaining a place to sleep, eat, heal, and entertain myself has taken the greater share of my efforts. I write not just to maintain sanity, but also to provide assistance to those who may walk the same path, if but for a day. Sometimes giving is as much a part of survival as receiving. Even if the gift of knowledge is not returned.

~Jain

 

BTW: Niven’s experience in California just spoke again. When staying at the Crowne Plaza Hotel she heard a handful of conversations in the corridor outside the room. Everything came to a head when she heard what could have been someone negotiating a price on a trick over the hotel phone. Come the return home and a long conversation with a friend, the two figured out that prostitutes where taking up residence in the hotel and working.

Needless to say, owning and running a hotel must be full of daily surprises that the innocent may not always be aware. There is something to be said for asking the right questions. Remember that being safety minded does not always have to be construed as the prima donna approach. Practicing safety tends to lead to a longer life.

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Poverty #1 (Addendum)

Posted by Tespid on January 13, 2017

All I can see is clarity fracturing into tiny squares. The shelf must have been designed to be shatter proof. My face and legs should be cut into a thousand shards.  I looked down at brown sugar feet capped with long toe nails that shred bed sheets into coleslaw like bedding. Angling my eyes up, I reserved panic at the vegetable drawer being filled with tiny pieces of glass. Nothing embedded into the tomatoes and lettuce. Chicken salad Friday night might still be in order. Bare handed I dug into the mess to assess the damage. The thick skinned fruit and wrapped cuts of meat would make it through the weekend. Meanwhile, I have an hour or two to clean up before running errands at the edge of sundown.

That was ten years ago and I am learning the other end of providing for myself – notably on a fixed income. Then, I gave up on my waistline and fad dieting. I fully gave into cooking. Learning my palate and local cuisine would go a long way to satisfying  hunger that I placed at Christ’s feet to surmise the winters and the loneliness. Sometimes we feed our fears and wanton natures throughout the dark nights with midnight cooking. The first time I made spaghetti with clam sauce after two in the morning, I knew I had a problem with balancing and fulfilling my appetites. Struggling through fasts and feasts still marks my back hucks and inner curves of skin gracing my hips. To me it is a mark of poverty that may finally disappear.  What it is, is a sign of inferiority crippling and vanity dictates. The men and boys around town admonished me as it is a sign of jealousy born of cravings for money. I caved in when Father admonished that this fascination with losing weight all succumbs to lust.

Since the thousand shards I am continually encouraged to cook and continue my studies. I never left the drive that put me in the kitchen then and the complimentary call of poverty suits me to be a little clever now with the meat, vegetables, grains, and sweets. Two years ago I asked God to keep me company in the kitchen while I cooked. The menu changed; the groceries changed; the methods expanded. Now I cook with the common and am finally filled. Passing the choice cuts and cooking in season bear intellectual as well as physical fruit.

Voices on the wind have been welcoming me into poverty. The welcome wagon was sincere enough for me to stay calm and understand the blessing. True, I am now a few levels up from street, but the breeze outside has been chilling my bones to make me think different. This month I have had more decisions to make complimented with an extensive amount of research and reading. Today the return on my investment began: a phone call from the oral surgeon’s office, a list of dental insurance companies to start with, and a mindfulness of what I already do to meter out the intermittent pain and inflammation. What I do with herbs and spices tends to turn a head in culinary and in medicinal applications. Late last night I got reminded to trust my education whether or not I am certified Naturopath. So, one cup of boiled water steeped with one clove of chopped garlic, ¼ teaspoon of turmeric, and ½ teaspoon of honey was started this afternoon. I steeped it for two minutes, followed by straining the solution. Furthermore, I cooled the liquid with several ice cubes to yield two cups. Gargle with 1/8 cup of solution three times a day to treat as an anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory. I gargled after breakfast and felt a change in my mouth. I have been pretty calm since one o’clock this afternoon. Also, one aspirin grazes these lips with 8 ounces of water once a day. I do not know if I will make it 6 months let alone 12 before insurance covers the oral surgery, but for now, I am good and that is all I need give a damn about.

Trying not to feel overwhelmed in the rain.

More essays on poverty’s edge to follow,

Jain Sioux Anne Fellps

TAMU graduate

(That Ain’t Me University)

Poor #1.5

Sidetracked: I lost confidence. I almost poured the solution out. I began to doubt anything I learned or rationalized in and out of the grocery store, in and out of the metaphysical store, in and out of the forest. The weight and experience of first-hand knowledge almost got bulldozed. So, I ransacked the Internet and my bookshelf to prove to myself that the time and knowledge has not been wasted. The following notes are from research that may help you follow my logic in making the mouth rinse. Meanwhile, I am adding natural care for teeth to my proactive research list. Necessity is the mother of invention.

1.       The herbal mouth rinse recipes range from alcohol base, to oil, and finally water. Refrigerate the rinse from the essay. It will keep for a week.

2.       I tend to combine herbs that focus on the culinary as well as the medicinal. I have not ordered anything online or have shopped at a fancy boutique. Garlic, turmeric, and honey are fairly inexpensive and easily found in the produce and baking aisles at many grocery stores.

3.       Garlic functions with the body as an antibiotic, a carminative, a diuretic, an expectorant, and a vermifuge.

4.       An active ingredient in turmeric is called curcumin. It is known to function as an anti-oxidant and an anti-inflammatory. Cholesterol lower properties are also attributed to turmeric.

5.       Honey functions as an anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal.

Primary Sources:

Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine by David Hoffmann FNIMH, AHG

 http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/medicinal-uses-of-honey#4

~Jain

 

 

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Screenshot: Indigenous Peoples

Posted by Tespid on January 12, 2017

Story image for indigenous peoples political underground from BarrieToday
Stay up to date on results for indigenous peoples political underground.

Create alert

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Cooking, menu as requested

Posted by Tespid on January 11, 2017

I’m knee deep in leftovers right now. Slowly, but ever so slowly I am digging myself out.

Fried mashed potato pancakes dusted with parmesan cheese with a side of olives

Steamed vegetable medley: cabbage, carrots, and apple

A one cup portion of tomato corn soup or a broiled fillet of fish.

I may don the peanut butter with slices of apple later tonight. Otherwise I am apt to recklessly raid the cookie jar. In either event, I’ve got work  I want to finish before eleven.

Headed for the kitchen,

~PPC

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Cooking, As needed

Posted by Tespid on January 10, 2017

Comfort Foods Winter 2016/2017

 

Warm applesauce mixed with crashed pineapple and Marichino cherries

Apples and peanut butter

Hot buttermilk biscuits with butter and honey

Coffee cum leche with a healthy dose of fresh whipped cream

Fresh English butter toffee coated in dark chocolate and almonds

Fresh hummus infused with garlic and a double side of pita

Almond Bark

Potato Pancakes dusted with parmesan cheese and a side of black olives

                1 ½ medium potatoes boiled, mashed, and cooled

                3 tablespoons of butter

                2 tablespoons of milk

                1 egg beaten

                2 tablespoons flour

                ½ teaspoon salt

                ½ teaspoon pepper

                Olive oil for frying

                ¼ cup Parmesan cheese

16 ounce can of black olives

Blend all ingredients into a smooth consistency. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a small frying pan. Drop potato batter into the oiled pan by 1/8 cup portions. Fry until golden brown on each side. Cook 1-3 pancakes per person. After the pancakes brown, place on a small plate and dust with parmesan cheese. Serve with a small side (5-7) of black olives.

               

Banana Bread

Twizzlers Candy

Shortbread with sweet Raspberry Tea

To be continued..

~NCC

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Tip Jar (Investments)

Posted by Tespid on January 10, 2017

I’m a little off when it comes to timing, but life calls all hours of the day leaving the nuances and crumbs to be picked up at the end of the hour.

A man’s voice asked me if I remembered an occasion over ten years old in my life. I didn’t throw up or pitch a fit. He knew that I was switching gears into survival mode and did not hesitate to mention a name. I reeled, but recovered. Apparently a large amount of marijuana is being moved around the town if not to forget the county.

So, I am feeling poverty’s call again and being welcomed in. “Hi (insert name here)! I just wanted to tell you welcome to poverty. I’m poor too. I have a couple of million in my house but I am poor. Is there anything I can do for you?”

Thus the lead and trap of a drug dealer. If I said I need help or welcomed his company, it would cost me money and probably blood.

Lastly was from a friend on the wind. Something is coming federally that may push people into isolation and self-defense. Friend says because of it, if I you are not dirty now, you will be. The crux, he warned, will be in loosing guardians. They will not be able to look after charges anymore.

So, I am busy getting back to planning and staying calm. This is more business I have had to handle in years. Organization is the first line of defense today.

W.H. Tespid ERT.

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Cooking, As requested (Addendum 2)

Posted by Tespid on January 7, 2017

 Left over Christmas business…

 

Peppermint Chocolate:

2 cups all purpose flour

¼ Hershey’s special dark chocolate powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup unsalted butter

1 cup granulated sugar

¾ cup light brown sugar (packed)

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 large eggs

1 cup dark chocolate chips

½-1 cup of crushed peppermint candies or candy canes

½ – 1 cup of coarsely chopped almonds

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon cinnamon

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Sift flour, chocolate powder, soda, and salt into a bowl and set aside. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla. Add in eggs one at a time and blend in for each addition. Fold in flour mixture ¼ at a time to the butter mixture. Use a spatula to catch edges. After mixing until a consistency appears, fold in chocolate chips, peppermints, and almonds. Drop by a 2” baller  into the sugar and cinnamon mixture and roll to coat. Place onto a parchment covered cookie sheet. Average about 12 cookies per sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Once removed from the oven, allow to cool 10-15 minutes before storing. Yield: 36.

Note: If you are a finicky person, the final shape of the cookies may bother you. When the peppermint candies melt, they will run away from the body of the cookie. Thus the small points when removed from the oven. Also, the cookie tastes more like food than a delectable sweet. Chocolate breakfast cookie perhaps? I’ll tweak that later with a little more research.

Note: After eating a generous helping of cookies since finishing the last batch, I sat in denial over the night. Waking a six, friend had a few words for my latest baking debacle. “They need to be sweeter,” he minded me. I could not deny it, even in spite of eating two more after turning on the light in this dark morning. Forcing a solution without messing with Toll House’s cookie chemistry I’m choosing to roll the dough in cinnamon and sugar before baking. That will balance the essential taste made by the dark chocolate powder to a degree. After that I’ll need add in more chips and/or peppermints. My balance for additions rested on the smaller end of values.

This will need wait until next Christmas with a fresh batch of leftover candy canes and such. Or at least until Christmas in July. I’ve baked so much in the last two months, that I am surprised my waist has not grown to match the cookie and cupcake total yield. The last two recipes I have baked four times a piece tweaking butter, flour, and sugar additions. The freezer knows me all too well. I’m set for snacks into June. A dozen here, a doubling there, a repeat up there tends to balance out in high numbers. I am learning my first approach is the best. I heard back from someone I gave a test stack of an old recipe. They want to get on board for next year’s Christmas baking list. If they only knew. Meanwhile I’m hyped for a meat pie recipe with a delicate crust along with finding a Renaissance or Middle Ages cookbook. New challenges for the coming year along with discovering a new ethnic grocery store. I miss my Palestinian cookbook.

From the Kitchen: I lost hope at five this morning, but I was reminded about how proportions and ingredients change when using cocoa powder. In other words, the recipe needed more sugar for the body of the cookie. I added 1/4 cup granulated sugar to the original 3/4 cup. This will increase sweetness and balance out flavors better. I will not be attempting this grace for several more months. If you are apt, go for it. Meanwhile, I have the two dozen plus from last night to mull and crumb over for the next two weeks. Eats will be good for the next few days. Just made corn tomato soup with all the fixin’s in less than an hour. Compared to the original five hour vigil, I’m feeling accomplished.

Thanks to Toll House for the base recipe. I appreciate you more each month I bake with your products.

Decadent is the last word for the day.

Enjoy and Merry Christmas Bob Crachett wherever your incarnation may be!

YF,

Pastied Pastry Cook

 

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